In this article, I am going to show you how you can identify if cats are bonded.
I will give you some hints and signs that will make you believe that your both cars are bonded now and you can see them growing.
Let’s get started
Taking a pet home for the first time is fun and that speaks well even for a cat. Especially for a cat. The mood within the household will change. The lesser stress you get and the more fun you will have taking pics of your cat.
But, like most beings, cats also need a pair. And, for humans, the urge to get another cat just because they are so cute is irresistible. So, you take home another one.
For experienced cat owners, we are aware of the safe space a new cat must-have when newly rehomed. The safe space that they will eventually leave as they get used to the new place, the humans, and the cats that they are going to live with.
Given the amount of time the old cat and the new cat spend together, how will you know if they have bonded?
Will My Cats Like Each Other? How Do You Know?
The solo cat showed an obvious and absolute bliss when the second cat came home. It felt as if, it was something she was secretly wishing for.
It was a pretty sight to see them together not hissing at each other.
A friend who is also a cat-vocate pointed out how lucky we were to have the two bonded immediately.
I didn’t know about cat bonding and all that. My only concern the first time was whether she’d like my kids or not.
I didn’t know that there would have been a possibility of them not liking each other.
Aside from not hissing at each other, there are other telltale signs to know whether the cats have bonded with each other and it is important to understand why.
1) Rubbing of bodies and faces with each other. Pheromones that cat’s glands release creates contentment between cats when they rub against each other.
When they rub each other’s faces against each other, they mingle their pheromones that strengthen their bond because of induced feelings of friendliness.
2) The intertwining of tails. Cats are comfortably intertwining their tails with each other. It could be another way of rubbing against each other and releasing pheromones.
3) Sleeping together. Seeing cats sleep and cuddled up together is the most adorable thing to see. But, in cats’ reality, sleeping that way makes them feel safe and comfortable with each other. They may sleep next to each other or sometimes even on each other.
4) Romping and roughing out but not too far. When bonded kittens play together, they do that without going far beyond breaking things and making things messy.
They have a well-developed intellect of how far they can go without roughhousing, play-fighting, or hurting.
5) All grooming” Cats are a neat freak. When you see them lick their bodies, it is their way of cleaning themselves. When cats are bonded, they clean and groom by licking each other. This also makes them stick together longer.
How can you tell if two cats are a bonded pair?
How can you tell if two cats are a bonded pair? Well, if they are bonded, they will do everything together. They play, sleep, eat together.
When they play, you will see both of them are equally sporty and enjoying.
When they sleep, both will sleep next to each other. If you happen to see this amazing moment, don’t forget to take a snap shot quickly.
Bonded cats will also rub their faces and stand to each other. which is another sign that both of them are equally interested and bonded.
In short, here are the signs to know if cats are bonded:
- They will rub their bodies and face with each other
- They will play together
- They will sleep together
- They will stand next to each other.
- They will also try to eat food together.
How Long Does It Take for Cats To Bond
Littermates sure have bonded from the beginning of their lives. After all, they are siblings. Cats who meet after they have grown, on the other hand, is a different story.
Some cats may take a few days to like each other, while others take weeks or months to bond. But, it can also depend on how the owners introduce them.
Cats who are not properly introduced will have a relationship that started off at the wrong paw.
How to Introduce Your Cat to A New Cat
Not everyone who brings home a new cat to the household can have the luck of friendship as instant as we had. Cats are known to be solitary creatures and they are not always friendly with people, dogs, or even each other.
Considering this biological behavior of felines, it is not surprising how difficult it is to introduce a new cat into an established territory, even when the zone is your home. But, even the most indifferent of animals can form a long-lasting relationship.
If you are bringing home a new cat, prepare an inch of your patience. The introduction should be done gradually.
Upon the initial introduction, the relationship may take a while to grow. Most cats take about eight to twelve months to progress into friendship.
Some become bonded at the very moment they meet. While others, just never do.
If your two cats won’t like each other, they shouldn’t cause you to worry. Most often, cats who don’t become friends become skilled at avoiding each other. There are just a few cases when one needs to get re-homed due to aggressiveness.
Think hard about bringing your tabby a new friend. It could be fun (at least for me it was).
But, if you are hesitant you can handle it, try some of the methods in introducing a new cat to your fur baby.
Step 1. Manipulating first impressions
The first impression is critical to cats. Aggression during the first meeting could set a mood for their future relationship, so that’s what you will try to avoid.
Try to separate your resident feline from your new cat upon bringing the new one home to control the initial meeting.
This will allow them to smell and hear each other without seeing or touching one another.
They should each have their own food, water bowl, litter box, scratching post, bed, etc., Position their feeding near a door that separates them to make them understand that coming together, even when they are not seeing each other can be a pleasant experience. It can also help to leave treats by the door.
After a couple of days, switch their places so they can study each other’s smell. This will also let your new cat explore another section of your new home.
Step 2. Scent-ing
Cats rely heavily on scents. One way of introducing them without physically seeing them is to pet one cat and then without washing your hands, pet the other, so that their smells transfer to each other. This is one of the safest ways to start familiarizing your two cats.
Step 3. First meeting and seeing each other
After a week or so (until you feel it’s time), if you notice no signs of aggression from both sides of the door, you may introduce the cats to each other.
You may use a temporary screen door or baby fence. This should let them notice each other, understand who they are, and gradually get to know each other.
Step 4. Allowing the cats to play together
After both moggies have familiarized themselves with each other, they should be able to remain relatively calm being together. Allow the cat to spend time playing without the barrier between them. But, make sure you are there to supervise the interaction.
Better to do it after a good meal or strenuous play so they won’t have enough energy to be aggressive. Have a squirt bottle ready in case they begin to fight. Once they become familiar with each other, they slowly increase their playtime together.
There is no scientific or proven way to make two cats friends but, these steps are worth giving it a try. However, if after doing the above steps, one cat unceasingly bothers and pursues the other, reach out to a professional.
What does it mean when cats are bonded?
When cats are bonded, it means they like each other so much just like humans. That means they will do everything together and show affection to each other. They become emotionally so attached that if you separate them, they will be depressed & go into anxiety mode.
Why Is It Important to Have Bonded Pair of Cats
Knowing whether your cats have bonded is crucial. This determines whether they will have a good life ahead, whether together or apart.
Not all kittens who live in the same house create a strong bond. Sometimes, they could just be tolerating each other’s presence but still disliking one another.
Bonded cats, however, will yearn if they are separated. They may become depressed and eventually develop behavior issues.
Helping Bonded Cats Grow Strong Bonds
Scents are everything to mousers. If they are feeling the scent they are smelling, then there is a good chance of better bonding. To help set the mood right with scents, there are ways to make it;
Jackson Galaxy, that cat whisperer you see in Animal Planet vouches for using items that soak up the cat’s scents to help with the introduction. The items he highly recommends are beds, blankets, carpets, scratchpads, and scratch posts.
You may also consider using Feliway to help with transitioning with a feline addition. Veterinarians highly recommend Feliway to cats who have new conditions they have to get used to or are facing stressful situations.
A lot of cat owners have had positive experiences with Feliway, in terms of changing unwanted behaviors displayed by their toms.
A little matchmaking can do the trick too. A stronger chance of bonding success happens when you pick the right cat to add to the pride.
Better if you pick based upon your resident tabby’s demeanor than your personal preference.
1) If your household has an adult cat, a younger kitten of the opposite gender will greatly reduce potential cat conflicts.
2) Ideally, both cats should be neutered or spayed before introduction to reduce hormones causing potential conflict.
Separating Bonded Cats – Should You Do It?
Despite having the reputation of being solitary creatures, cats actually enjoy other creature’s companies, whether they may be a cat, dog, or humans. After all, cats, like lions all live in pride.
Cats who have bonded are better together. In a study, it is said that cats who have feline friends are more socially adjusted and live longer.
Fierce prides are also brought about by kittens who have bonded as early as when they were just littermates.
Adult cats may not be as friendly in the beginning but will eventually enjoy and crave each other’s company.
However, a feline’s bond worked to form, separating them may result in unpleasant things. Owners have reported that they noticed negative symptoms in the separation of bonded cats like:
- Turning out to be a clingy Velcro cat to their human
- Boredom and anxiety
- Attention seeking demeanor, like meowing loudly
- Refusing to eat
- Loss of confidence
- Depression and slump
- Obsessive behavior, like extreme grooming
- Damaging behaviors, like chewing and scratching everywhere
- Decline in health
Will Bonded Cats Remember Each Other After a While of Being Separated
Cats may form strong bonded relationships with others but, according to The Nest it won’t likely be an assurance they will remember each other after they get separated. Even when they stayed together for many years.
It is the same case with moggies who bond strongly with their mothers and littermates. They won’t remember them when they get separated.
Blame it on pheromones. As cats rely heavily on scents, separation will hinder their most important part of communication. Cats living in the same household will have a familiar scent, therefore they will be more acceptable to each other.
But, once one of the pair goes away, new smells that cat may obtain may result in unfamiliarity. This is also true even with just a trip to the vet.
Do Bonded Cats Fight
Bonded cats also fight. Their strong attachment to each other is not a guarantee they will not clash.
Cats are highly territorial creatures and they often defend what they believe is their rightful zone, whether it is a certain room in the house, a spot in the back yard, or a ball they play with.
Males are aggressive by nature and that is just how they are. They may play in a rough manner that could potentially escalate to real fight especially when the other cat can keep up on the same page.
As Jackson Galaxy explains, cats never work out their differences with fighting. They could end up getting severely hurt along the way.
Therefore, it is important that they get properly introduced together to avoid a violent and fearful relationship.
Find out more about how he suggests you should introduce two cats to each other in his video:
Bringing home a new cat into a household that already has an existing cat requires extensive and careful planning. It is not just a simple meeting of a newcomer.
You have to make sure they like each other’s demeanor. And, that has to be done without them seeing each other.
One thing is for sure, cats love a happy environment. If you give them that, they will more likely get along well with each other.
Make sure they have enough hiding, resting and sitting spots and position food, water, and litter boxes strategically so they don’t feel trapped when they need these resources.
Hi There, AJ Oren here. I am the founder of this amazing pet blog & a passionate writer who loves helping pet owners to learn more about their pets through my articles. I am also the content manager of this blog. I have experience in pet training and behavior, sheltering, and currently working for a veterinary clinic.